The 20 Saddest Songs Ever Released

While there are many ways to cope with sadness, one of the most popular is through music. There’s just something about listening to a sad song that can make us feel better. It’s like the singer understands what we’re going through and is able to express it in a way that we can relate to.

It’s safe to say that we all have experienced sadness at some point in our lives. Whether it be from the loss of a loved one, the end of a relationship, or just a general feeling of loneliness, sadness is a normal human emotion.

Here are 20 of the saddest songs ever released.

1. “Everybody Hurts” by R.E.M.

The first song on the list is “Everybody Hurts” by R.E.M. This song was released in 1993 and is about the pain and suffering that everyone goes through in life. The lyrics are incredibly relatable and will make you shed a few tears. You can find it on the “Automatic for the People” album.

2. “Angels” by Robbie Williams

Next on the list is “Angels” by Robbie Williams. This song was released in 1997 as part of the “Life thru a Lens” album. It’s about the loss of a loved one, and how that person is now an angel watching over us. This will resonate with you if you’ve experienced a loss yourself.

3. “Back to Black” by Amy Winehouse

Amy Winehouse’s “Back to Black” is next on the list. This song was released in 2007 and is about a failed relationship. Winehouse’s voice is haunting as she sings about how her love has left her and how she’s trying to get over it. You can find it on the album with the same title.

4. “The River” by Bruce Springsteen

“The River” by Bruce Springsteen is a song about growing up and making tough choices in life. It was released in 1981 as part of the album of the same title. This song will make you think about your own life and the choices you’ve made. It’s a heart-wrenching ballad that will stay with you long after you’ve heard it.

5. “Ain’t No Way” by Aretha Franklin

Next on the list is “Ain’t No Way” by Aretha Franklin. This song was released in 1968 on the album “Lady Soul”. It’s a soulful ballad about a woman who is trying to convince herself that her man will never leave her. It’s a sad song, but it’s also a reminder that hope is sometimes all we have.

6. “Love Is A Laserquest” by Arctic Monkeys

Arctic Monkeys’ “Love Is A Laserquest” is a song about unrequited love. This song was released in 2011 on the album “Suck It and See”. Their live performance of this song now has almost 7 million views on Youtube so go check it out.

7. “I Don’t Believe In The Sun” by The Magnetic Fields

The next song is not only sad but also incredibly relatable. “I Don’t Believe in the Sun” by The Magnetic Fields is a song about being unable to find joy in anything, no matter how hard you try. You may find the lyrics depressing, but they’re also something that many people can relate to. It was released in 1999 as part of the “69 Love Songs” album.

8. “Wish You Were Here” by Pink Floyd

Pink Floyd’s “Wish You Were Here” is a classic sad song that was released in 1975. The song is about loss, and how someone can be gone but still present in your memories. It’s a reminder that even though someone may be gone, they can still have a significant impact on your life. It’s one of their most popular tracks which has been covered by various artists over the years.

9. “I Can’t Make You Love Me” by Bonnie Raitt

“I Can’t Make You Love Me” is a sad love song that was originally written by Mike Reid and Allen Shamblin. It’s been covered by many artists, but the most well-known is still the original version by Bonnie Raitt, which was released in 1991. The song is about trying to change someone who doesn’t want to be changed, and how sometimes you just have to accept that it’s not going to work out.

10. “Jolene” by Dolly Parton

This next song is a bit of an unconventional choice, but it’s still incredibly sad. “Jolene” by Dolly Parton is about a woman who is begging another woman not to take her man away from her. It’s a heart-wrenching song that shows the desperation and pain of losing someone you love. It was released in 1973 as part of her album of the same title.

11. “I Will Always Love You” by Whitney Houston

Next on the list is one of the most popular love songs of all time, “I Will Always Love You” by Whitney Houston. The song is about a love that will never die, even though the relationship may be over. It’s a beautiful ballad that has been covered by many artists, but Whitney Houston’s version is still the most well-known. It has been featured in the popular movie, “The Bodyguard”.

12. “I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry” by Hank Williams

Hank Williams’ “I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry” is a classic country song that was released in 1949. The song is about feeling so lonely and sad that you could cry. It’s a reminder that sometimes we all need someone to help us through tough times. The song has been covered by many artists over the years and can still be streamed on music platforms today.

13. “Someone Like You” by Adele

The next song on the list is “Someone Like You” by Adele. This song was released in 2011 and is about a past relationship. The lyrics are full of sadness and regret, as Adele sings about how she wishes things had ended differently. The song is a reminder that sometimes the people we love can hurt us the most.

14. “Black” by Pearl Jam

“Black” by Pearl Jam is a song that was released in 1991. The song is about loss and grief, and how difficult it can be to move on from someone we love. The lyrics are full of pain and sadness, and the song is a reminder that sometimes life doesn’t go the way we want it to. You can find it on their “Ten” album.

15. “Hurt” by Nine Inch Nails

Next on the list is “Hurt” by Nine Inch Nails. This song was released in 1995 and is about addiction and self-harm. The lyrics are full of pain and despair, and the song is a reminder that sometimes we can hurt the ones we love the most. You can find it on their album “The Downward Spiral”.

16. “Heaven’s Only Days Down the Road” by Shelby Lynne

“Heaven’s Only Days Down the Road” by Shelby Lynne is a song about loss and grief. The lyrics are full of sadness and despair, and the song is a reminder that sometimes it feels like heaven is just out of reach. You can find it on her album “Revelation Road”.

17. “The Boxer” by Simon & Garfunkel

The next entry is “The Boxer” by Simon and Garfunkel. This song was released in 1969 and is about a boxer who is down on his luck. The lyrics describe the boxer’s life and how he has been beaten down by it. The song is sad, but also has an uplifting message about never giving up. You can find it on the duo’s “Bridge over Troubled Water” album.

18. “Strange Fruit” by Billie Holiday

“Strange Fruit” is a protest song against lynching poem written by Abel Meeropol in 1937. Billie Holiday’s 1939 rendition is one of the most famous and heartbreaking versions of the song. The lyrics are graphic, to say the least. It’s still a relevant and powerful song today, as racial violence is still active.

19. “Into My Arms” by Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds

Next on the list is “Into My Arms” by Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds. This song was released in 1997 and is about the desire for love and comfort. The lyrics are sad and longing, but also beautiful. You can find it on the band’s album “The Boatman’s Call”. If you’re heartbroken and a fan of Nick Cave, this is a must-listen.

20. “Un-Break My Heart” by Toni Braxton

Finishing off the list is “Un-Break My Heart” by Toni Braxton. This song was released in 1996 and is about the pain of a broken heart. The lyrics are sad and emotional, and the song is sure to make you cry. You can find it on Braxton’s “Secrets” album. If you’re looking for a sad love song to listen to, this is the one.

Final Thoughts

These are just a few of the saddest songs ever released. If you’re feeling down and need a good cry, give them a listen. They are all relatable if you’ve ever experienced heartbreak or loss.

Brian Clark is a multi-instrumentalist and music producer. He is passionate about practically all areas of music and he particularly enjoys writing about the music industry.

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